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My Appearance In Wall

Nice story by Jamie Biesiada of The Coast Star, re-published with the permission of The Coast Star.

Schneck speaks about fair-school funding with Wall Committee

Libertarian assembly candidate requests adoption of resolution on funding formula

By Jamie Biesiada

WALL TOWNSHIP — David Schneck, a Belmar resident and Libertarian candidate for an assembly seat this November in District 30, approached the Wall Township Committee with a request for a resolution in support of the Fair School Funding plan during last week’s meeting.

“I think that the state is really mistreating the suburbs, particularly the smaller suburban towns,” Mr. Schneck said, adding he did not feel state representatives were doing much about the situation.

From unfunded mandates to affordable housing mandates, he said, towns are faced with increasing costs.

“Right now, the residents of the suburban towns are paying very high income tax, and none of that money — or, very, very little of it — comes back to the towns in the form of state aid,” Mr. Schneck said, calling the current formula for distributing state aid “distorted.”

As an example, he said, Wall residents paid $39.8 million in income taxes in 2009, and only received $1.9 million back in state aid.

He brought before the committee the Fair School Funding plan, created by Republican Sen. Mike Doherty.

If the proposal were to become law, it would take all receipts from state income tax and divide the total amount of income tax equally by the number of students in the state. Each town, he explained, would be sent that amount, multiplied by the number of students it holds.

“Now, if this plan was to become law, Wall Township would receive an additional $27,269,000 in state aid,” Mr. Schneck said.

A number of towns throughout the state — more than 20 — have passed a resolution in support of the plan, he said, which points out the “unconstitutionality of the current [state aid] formula.”

Mr. Schneck said the current formula is unconstitutional because decisions in funding are left to the legislature, not the Supreme Court. Additionally, he said, the constitution states income taxes are “for the benefit of all citizens equally.”

Instead, Mr. Schneck said, tax dollars from suburban towns are being used to pay for services in cities in New Jersey.

“I don’t think this should be allowed to be a permanent fact of life in New Jersey,” he said.

At the end of the meeting, Mayor Ann Marie Conte thanked Mr. Schneck for providing the township with a model ordinance and said it would be reviewed.

Nearby Belmar and Sea Girt have passed a resolution in support of the plan. For more information on Sen. Doherty’s Fair School Funding plan, visit

Jamie Biesiada covers Wall Township for The Coast Star. She can be reached at or 732-223-0076 Ext 20.


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